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March 14, 2011

Now, Neftali Feliz wants to be a starter

Right-hander Neftali Feliz, buoyed by confidence in a new cut fastball, just told reporters that he wants to be a starting pitcher and his goal the rest of spring training is to make the Rangers' rotation.

"That's what we're working for," he said. "Right now, [his goal] is to start."

Feliz allowed one run on three hits in four innings today against the Dodgers, throwing 59 pitches. He then went to the bullpen and threw 25 to 30 more. He said that a conversation with pitching coach Mike Maddux last week cleared the air on his intentions for the season.

Only a week ago, Feliz made news by saying he was more comfortable as the closer, but never closed the door to starting. Two days later, he worked in relief but spoke to Maddux soon thereafter.

Feliz said that he won't be disappointed if he returns to the bullpen in 2011, and some in the organization want him there.

"I just want to be a part of the team," Feliz said.

-- Jeff Wilson

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